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Illustration by Brittany England

Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. As many as may have the disease, estimates the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation. Crohn’s is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Symptoms vary from one person to the next, but common Crohn's symptoms include:

  • abdominal cramping
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • blood in stool

While the cause isn’t yet understood, Crohn’s disease may be related to . Fortunately, it’s possible to effectively manage symptoms of Crohn’s disease. A good first step is to understand your own body. The following resources may help in doing this.

Organizations

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation

This nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization is committed to finding a cure for Crohn’s disease and other GI conditions. The foundation also works to improve the quality of life for children and adults living with these diseases. They provide tips for managing symptoms and information about clinical trials.

Crohn’s & Colitis Canada

Canada has some of the highest rates of Crohn’s disease in the world. This foundation is the country’s only volunteer-based charity committed to finding a cure. Their work has transformed the lives of Canadians living with Crohn’s and other GI diseases.

Intense Intestines Foundation

The goal of this foundation is to empower those living with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis to “never stay quiet” about their condition. They work to raise awareness through events and fundraising while also helping the people living with these conditions lead active and fulfilling lives.

European Federation of Crohn’s & Ulcerative Colitis Association (EFCCA)

The EFCCA represents 36 national patient associations. These groups encourage and facilitate the exchange of information. They also support international activities to advocate, empower, and raise awareness about Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis.

IBD easy eat hand Foundation

The goal at the IBD easy eat hand Foundation is simple: ensure that no one living with inflammatory IBD ever feels alone or isolated because of their condition. The foundation, built by patients for patients, is there to help and answer questions 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

American Gastroenterological Association

Founded in 1897, this association consists of more than 16,000 members from around the world. These members are involved in a variety of areas of the “science, practice, and advancement of gastroenterology.”

American College of Gastroenterology

The American College of Gastroenterology is a professional organization that works to assist clinicians to bring evidence-based health care to gastroenterology patients through resources, research and guidance, and practice management.

Connecting to Cure Crohn’s & Colitis

This organization works to unite the IBD community. They also promote public awareness about these chronic conditions, fund research for treatment and cures, and support patients and their families.

Communities and support

Girls With Guts

Girls With Guts exists to support and empower women living with IBD by building a sisterhood across the United States through its website and live events.

ImproveCareNow

This is a collaborative community that brings together patients, parents, clinicians, and researchers. They work to help children living with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis by changing how medicine is practiced.

GI Society

The GI Society is the charity of the Canadian Society of Intestinal Research. They work to improve the lives of people living with GI and liver conditions. The charity supports research, advocates for access to healthcare, and offers a number of programs and services.

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation

The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation provides useful information, first-person stories, and advice through its community forum and online support group. You can also find an expert Q&A section and an extensive list of resources.

Gusty Walk for Crohn’s and Colitis

Canada’s largest fundraiser for Crohn’s and colitis has raised more than $38 million for research and patient programs. These family-friendly, noncompetitive walks are a positive way to move one step closer to finding a cure.

Research and helpful information

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The CDC website offers information about IBD, including definitions and symptoms, data and statistics, and helpful resources.

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

The NIDDK website overs a comprehensive overview of Crohn’s disease, from symptoms and causes to diagnosis and treatment. Read about diet and nutrition, clinical trials, and much more.

Healthline

Healthline offers facts and statistics about Crohn’s disease, including causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and complications.

Visit the website.

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America

For a straightforward overview of IBDs, this booklet identifies signs and symptoms, risk factors, statistics and treatment, and resources of support.

Books

“”

With new research and insight, this revised edition helps those who have been newly diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis learn how to manage their condition.

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Following dietary guidelines from the American Dietetic Association can help people living with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis manage symptoms while also enjoying a varied diet. This cookbook offers simple recipes paired with useful nutritional advice.

“”

This funny, warm, and truthful account of life with Crohn’s disease is packed with author Kathleen Nicholls’ own personal experiences with the condition. With practical advice and tips, plus laugh-out-loud stories, it’s a great read for anyone interested in learning about life with Crohn’s.

Clinical trials

Clinical trials help find effective, safe treatments for disease. The evaluation of clinical trials helps turn research into new medicines. The following three resources may help you find clinical trials relating to Crohn’s disease and other chronic GI conditions:

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Jessica has been a writer and editor for over 10 years. Following the birth of her first son, she left her advertising job to begin freelancing. Today, she writes, edits, and consults for a great group of steady and growing clients as a work-at-home mom of four, squeezing in a side gig as a fitness co-director for a martial arts academy. Between her busy home life and mix of clients from varied industries — like stand-up paddleboarding, energy bars, industrial real estate, and more — Jessica never gets bored.